Havent posted in a while, here it goes...
First I would like to address the Dolphins QB situation. There have been reports that the team was going to take Christian Ponder at 15 had he been available, and that they attempted to trade up for Ryan Mallett in round 3. I feel like the Dolphins said a lot more with their actions over the weekend then these “reports” can ever tell us.
If in fact the Bifecta really loved Christian Ponder, then one fair assumption is that they would have traded up with Washington or Dallas and scooped Ponder. Now, obviously they didn’t have a second round pick to offer, but nonetheless I assume if the team truly believed he was a franchise QB in the making, they could have met the Redskins or Cowboys demands in some way. Therefore, I can only conclude that they were either not enamored with Ponder as its been suggested, or worse they are scared to death to take any young QB out of fear that they won’t be in Miami long enough to seem him succeed. If you wanted him at 15, why not move up and grab him at 9 or 10? Sticking to your board doesn’t apply when it comes to franchise QBs. Color me skeptical.
Ryan Mallett is a different situation. The team passed on Mallett at 15, and passed on him again at the end of round 2 after trading up. If this team WANTED Ryan Mallett, then he would be a Dolphin right now. They had every opportunity to secure him, and even showed themselves to be aggressors on day 2 and 3 of the draft. Look at how they jumped into round 2 because they were spooked by Cincy and were afraid Daniel Thomas wouldn’t be there at 79; thats what they do when they WANT a player. The team obviously had no plans to draft Mallett, and then saw him start to fall farther then they could have ever imagined, and only then considered making a move for him that I am sure was from the stand point of “well why not, I mean christ at this point he is worth the risk if he doesn’t last past training camp”. I liken this situation to the Browns with Colt McCoy in the 2010 draft. Eventually, Mike Holmgren pulled the trigger after McCoy had slipped until late in round 3. In fact, Holmgren had already used one 3rd rounder on G Shawn Lauvo when they finally decided to settle on Mccoy somewhere in the 80’s. Clearly, Holmgren didn’t think the world of Mccoy, but eventually his value was just too great to pass up. Point is, the Dolphins never really wanted Mallett and/or again they were scared to take any young QB and only a free falling Mallett finally sparked their interest.
I for one was very disappointed the team didn’t take a QB in this year’s draft. I can only hope that the bifecta truly felt that no QB was worth it, and not that they were simply afraid to go with a young signal caller. That kind of short sighted thinking gets you fired long before a rookie QB does.
Other Random Thoughts on the draft and the team going forward…
* I am very unsure of what this team plans to do at QB via free agency or trade (assuming they address it in some fashion). There is a huge difference between bringing in someone to push Henne, and bringing in someone to compete and/or replace him. This will likely depend on the quality of QB they bring into the fold once free agency begins. If it’s Kevin Kolb, he is the starter. Same goes for Carson Palmer (still sliver of hope) and Kyle Orton IMO. If they bring in an over the hill veteran such as Donovan McNabb or Marc Bulger, I assume that the team wants Henne to win the job and has brought in a veteran insurance policy to “push” him. To me, Vince Young, Matt Flynn, and Matt Hassleback qualify as wild cards. If they sign Vince Young I think it’s an open competition because he carries to much baggage. With Matt Flynn, it depends on the team’s feelings towards him. I have heard there is growing sentiment he is starting material and is destined to be a team’s starter in the near future. However, with such limited starting experience I can’t imagine they would simply hand over the keys. In Flynn’s case though, I do believe the team would want him to win the job in an ideal world. Hassleback is interesting because first of all I think he has just as good a chance as any on being the guy we sign, and secondly because like Flynn it really depends on the team’s opinion of him. Some thing he is over the hill like a McNabb or Bulger, others point to their playoff win against the Saints and say he has something left in the tank. I could see a scenario where they brought him into to start, or as a veteran insurance policy, push Henne type.
I guess time will tell what the team truly thinks of Henne, and the available QB’s…
(By the way, I assumed someone will make a case for McNabb not being over the hill in the comments section. Anyone who says that will be someone who hasn’t watched him play closely over the past few seasons. I live in Philadelphia, I have watched his whole career, and trust me, he was benched for good reason last season and he has been in a downward spiral for a while the national media just simply refuses to fully admit it)
* I am a big DeAngelo Williams fan and would welcome his addition to the team. With his injury history, he needs to be paired with a young RB with fresh legs who can take a pounding, and that is exactly what Daniel Thomas. If we sign a Darren Sproles type instead, Thomas will take on a more feature back role I suppose. Quite honestly, given his draft slot he should be a feature back, but we can’t pass on Williams talent if he is available.
* The most underrated player on this team nationally is probably Kendall Langford, but amongst the fan base it is Brian Hartline. He is a very good possession receiver with adequate speed and will unquestionably be starting week 1. We have a deep and very good at group of receivers with the addition of Edmund Gates, and this includes Hartline.
* There was never a chance Vernon Carey was moving to guard, and I don’t have a clue why so many fans have suggested that this off-season. He needs to get healthy, and if he can he is a top 10 tackle in the NFL.
* I am worried about both John Jerry and Tony Sparano. At this point you have to say Incognito, Pouncey, and Garner are the likely starters along the interior line, and this spells serious trouble for a RG only player like Jerry. I still think he has a lot of potential, but clearly he didn’t show it much in year 1, as Pat McQuiston is barely an adequate backup and he supplanted him often. Sparano is supposed to be a Oline guru, hand picked Jerry at last years Senior Bowl, and now has egg on his face, again. First Shawn Murphy and Donald Thomas in 2008, multiple FA signings, and now John Jerry seems likely to be the next casualty. There is a saying that goes “in the NFL the same thing that got you hired will get you fired.” In this case, Sparano’s inability to develop an Oline, which of course culminated in the team needing to pick a god d*mn center at 15th overall last week, may be his undoing if this season goes in the tubes.
* This team as a whole, but especially the defense is extremely deep heading into training camp (hopefully). The only possible need on defense is a situational pass rusher, and that need may be abolished if Misi continues to develop as a pass rusher. I have a strangely good feeling about Frank Kearse and Jimmy Wilson. I think we got two steals in round 7, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see either of them make this team and contribute in some capacity.
Thanks for allowing me to rant a little here. It should be interesting to see where we go from here as free agency seems like it may be just around the corner. I am disappointed today that we still do not have an answer at QB, but a few guys intrigue me enough that could be available that I still like our chances of winning 9 or 10 games next season. Hell, you never know, if Henne is going to turn things around, he should have all the opportunity in the world with how much talent this team has around him.